Hi, and welcome to my review of Oberlo, if you are thinking of starting a dropshipping business and want to know if this app can help you, I hope this article will help you decide.
Dropshipping is one of the most popular methods to start an eCommerce business, it doesn’t require a huge investment to get started and it is relatively simple to operate. This is one of the main reasons this business model has become popular among new entrepreneurs and why it is a booming industry.
Oberlo is a Shopify dropshipping app that allows you to search and import products from AliExpress into your Shopify store with the click of a few buttons.
It also comes with a host of other features that will help make your store retain customers, increase sales and help boost your profits.
What is dropshipping?
Dropshipping is an eCommerce distribution method in which the store owner never handles any of the inventory he/she sells. Dropshippers act as the middlemen between customers and suppliers.When an order comes in, the store owner will pass on the order to the supplier and they will deliver the item.
The store owner will keep the difference between what they charged the customer and what they paid for it from the supplier. Profit margins in dropshipping can be anything between 10% – 300% depending on who your supplier is and where you dropship. For a more detailed explanation of dropshipping read this article.
So, what exactly is Oberlo and how can it help you run a dropshipping business?
Oberlo is a Shopify App that helps dropshippers import products from AliExpress to their Shopify store with little hassle. Its interface is clean and very easy to navigate, there isn’t a steep learning curve which makes it great for everyone.
Oberlo comes with many features that will automate many parts of your dropsipping business, these features include the following;
Search And Import
Finding and importing products from AliExpress is one of the main features of this app and it can be done with a couple of clicks. You can either do this inside the app or use the Chrome extension and you can filter your search through the following options;
Delivery method – AliExpress has multiple delivery arrangements, the most popular with dropshippers is ePacket.
Verified Supplier – Oberlo have their own database of suppliers that have proven to deliver exceptional customer service.
Warehouse location – If you want faster delivery times, you filter to make sure that warehouses are located nearer to where you will be delivering.
Order Count – Filter by the number of orders for any product in a given month.
Each search result also provides you with the following data;
Price of the item and delivery charge
The Supplier ID
No. of reviews for the product
How many times the product has been imported into an Oberlo/Shopify store.
Number of views across all Shopify stores that have imported the product
The number of times the product has been ordered from a Shopify store
These data points will be useful in determining if a product has the potential to be a winner or not.
Fulfil and Track Orders
One of the best ways to gain customer satisfaction is to fulfil their orders on time and Oberlo makes this possible with their streamlined ordering process.
Once an order comes, all you have to do is order the product from the Oberlo dashboard and they will take care of the rest.
It really is that simple and straightforward. You will also be able to track the order from the moment it leaves the suppliers warehouse until it reaches its destination.
Automatic Inventory and Price Updates
Another fantastic feature, you will not have to worry about customers ordering items that are out of stock because Oberlo will alert you when an item is no longer available.
This will allow you to either remove the item or find an alternative supplier of that item. The app will also update any changes in price, this will allow you to make any adjustment to your own price so that you always stay in profit.
Change Suppliers Whenever You Want
One of the great things about AliExpress is that there are multiple suppliers for many of the same products.
What this means is that you can change suppliers very easily should you see that you will get a better deal. With Oberlo you can change suppliers with the click of a few buttons and your customers will not know the difference.
Automated Pricing Rules
This is another time-saving feature, you can set up your own pricing rules for all your products without having to price them individually one by one.
You have two basic pricing options, they are:
- Multiplier – Multiply the original price by a fixed number
- Fixed Markup – Allows you to add a fixed number to the original price
There is a more advanced feature where you can set pricing rules depending on the cost of the product, so for example, the pricing rule below shows that if a product is priced between $20-$50, it should be multiplied by 2 for the selling price.
One of the issues with dropshipping from AliExpress is the length of time it takes for the item to be delivered.
However, there are some products that can be delivered faster with a service called ePacket. Products that are eligible for ePacket delivery can be found by applying the ePacket filter within Oberlo.
Most products that are eligible for ePacket delivery are small and lightweight and when you first start dropshipping, these are the types of products you would start with.
You can edit product description, images, titles etc not only will this make you stand out from other people who are selling the same product but it will also have some SEO value should you want to rank for any keywords.
You can track the sales of all your products and analyse which products are converting well and which are not. This will allow you to stop promoting products that are not selling well and put more effort behind ones that are.
The sales dashboard will provide you with a total earnings report and provide stats for your top 5 selling items.
Oberlo Verified Suppliers
Oberlo verified suppliers is a large database of the best reviewed and most trustworthy suppliers on the AliExpress marketplace.
The suppliers have been handpicked by the Oberlo team so you know that the products and service will be of the highest quality.
All the suppliers are aware that most of their business customers are dropshippers so they will not deliver items with promotional material that will let customers be aware of this fact.
Oberlo has a fantastic support system and this is showcased by their extensive resources page. These are some of the materials you get free access to (you don’t even have to subscribe to free membership of Oberlo):
- Free eCommerce eBooks
- Active Community Forum
- Free Business tools
- Free Stock images
- Updated list of trending products
- Guide on what to sell
- Help centre
Even if you do not end up using the app, the resources alone will help you in your eCommerce business. They also have a very lively community forum where you can and ask for help and advise and learn from successful Oberlo dropshippers.
There are three options you can choose should you decide to use the app for your dropshipping business.
There is a free plan and two paid plans.
Oberlo is free until you reach 50 orders per month (which hopefully you should do sooner rather later). The Basic plan is $29.90 pm and the Pro plan is $79.90 pm.
All the major features are included in the free plan, along with a 14-day free trial that comes with every Shopify plan, you can potentially start a dropshipping business with no upfront costs (only need to pay for a domain name, which can be purchased for less than $10 form Namecheap)
Oberlo vs Alidropship
There is another app that is very similar to Oberlo, it is called Alidropship and comes with many of the same dropshipping automation features as Oberlo.
You can read my review of Alidropship and decide for yourself which one you prefer. I personally prefer Alidropship, mainly because it works with WordPress and I am very familiar with that platform (this website is built on WordPress).
However, the one advantage that Oberlo has over Alidropship is that there is a free version of the app, Alidropship comes with a one time fee.
Either one is fine for dropshipping, however, although I personally prefer Alidropship, many people find Oberlo easier to use and Shopify less technically demanding than WordPress
With dropshipping becoming a very popular method to start an eCommerce business it was inevitable an app like Oberlo would be developed. It is a fantastic app and it will definitely make running a dropshipping business much easier.
If you are new to dropshipping, Oberlo has a wide range of resources to help you and it does have a fantastic customer support system should you need additional assistance.
Looking through their various blog posts and updates, the company is continuously improving the platform and this is reflected by the fact that Shopify acquired the company for a substantial amount in 2017.
The only negative point I have to make is that it only works with Shopify and so you are stuck with one eCommerce platform. This can be a problem down the road if you decide to move to another platform as you will have to start over from scratch.
However, I highly doubt anyone would want to move if their dropshipping business starts seeing success, which it hopefully will do for you.
Oberlo is a fantastic dropshipping app, if you are thinking about starting a dropshipping business on Shopify, this app will be a huge asset.